December 1, 2020
You may know Stephen Hough as a concert pianist, but you probably don’t know that he is a painter and prize-winning poet. This Renaissance man is the first classical musician to have received a MacArthur Genius Grant. Mr. Hough’s newest book, Rough Ideas, is a collection of short essays, or as I might call them, “thought pieces.” They are the result of notes about a wide range of topics that he jotted down while he was waiting—at airports, on planes, and in hotel rooms. After reading one of these essays and reflecting on it, I often felt that I had been engaged in a conversation with a warm, witty, and intelligent friend.
Photo: Andrew Crowley